Retailer settles HIPAA violation allegations over improper electronic device disposal: 4 details


Wakefern Food Corp., a large retailer-owned cooperative based in Keasbey, N.J., and two associated ShopRite supermarkets will pay $235,000 to settle HIPAA violation allegations for inappropriately discarding patient records.

Four details:

1. In 2016, the company discarded into dumpsters electronic devices used to collect patient signatures and purchase information from pharmacy customers after replacing the devices.

2. The discarded devices were not properly wiped of patient information before being discarded.

3. The devices included patient names, phone numbers, birth dates, drivers license numbers, prescription numbers and medication information. There were more than 9,7000 individuals potentially affected by the breach.

4. The company agreed to pay $235,000 to settle the allegations and improve data security practices. Wakefern appointed a chief privacy officer and provided online employee training in HIPAA under the agreement as well.

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